- Repair & Care
Chicago—April 22, 2005—Cars.com, the fastest growing online automotive marketplace, continues its aggressive marketing push with sponsorship of this weekend's NFL Draft on ESPN. As part of the sponsorship, Cars.com's award winning advertising spots and a series of audio/visual billboards will air during ESPN's coverage of the NFL Draft on Saturday, April 23 and Sunday, April 24. According to Media Life Magazine, the NFL Draft is likely to be the most-watched sporting event of the weekend, and has become one of ESPN's biggest draws of the year.
"We are excited to extend our advertising presence on ESPN through sponsorship of major television events such as the NFL Draft," said Mitch Golub, president of Cars.com. "Viewed by more than 31 million people in 2004, the Draft is an excellent opportunity to reach consumers with the Cars.com brand and to drive in-market car shoppers to our Web site in their search for a new or used vehicle."
Cars.com advertising can be seen throughout ESPN's line-up of NFL programming, including the "NFL Live" and "NFL Presents." Additionally, Cars.com brings viewers features like 'Top-Ten' and 'Call of the Day' as a sponsor of "SportsCenter," the number one sports information show. Cars.com spots also air on popular ESPN and ESPN 2 shows like "Cold Pizza," "Baseball Tonight" and "NBA Nation," as well as in live sporting events such as Major League Baseball, NBA and PGA Golf. The presence extends to ESPN.com where Cars.com spots can be seen in streaming video as part of ESPN Motion. Cars.com also reaches ESPN.com visitors with branding units throughout the site and sponsorship of the homepage poll.
"Our continued investment in marketing on top networks such as ESPN ultimately results in more vehicle sales for our network of automotive advertisers," said Golub. "As we continue our marketing push in concert with consumer site development, we see record numbers of site visitors each month who are driving a record number of inquiries to local dealers, and in the end, connecting to make a sale," said Golub.
March marked the third consecutive month this year of record year-over-year traffic for Cars.com. According to comScore Media Metrix (Custom Reporting) unique visitors to the site were up 46 percent over March of 2004. 1 Consumers visiting the site also searched for vehicles in record numbers, and they delivered a record number of leads to its advertising partners. Searches were up 78% over March 2004 (internal reporting).
Partnered with more than 200 leading metro newspapers, television stations and their Web sites, Cars.com is the most comprehensive destination for those looking to buy or sell a new or used car. The site places more than 1.4 million vehicle listings from 10,000 dealer customers, classified advertisers and private-party listings to offer consumers the best selection of new and used cars online, as well as the content, tools and advice to support their shopping experience. Cars.com combines powerful inventory search tools and new-car configuration with pricing information, photo galleries, buying guides, side-by-side comparison tools, original editorial content and reviews to help millions of consumers connect with sellers each month.
Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures, LLC, (http://classifiedventures.com), which is owned by six leading media companies including, Belo (NYSE: BLC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), Knight Ridder (NYSE: KRI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB) and The Washington Post Company. (NYSE: WPO).
(1) Media Metrix Custom Reporting (traffic to Cars.com and traffic to Cars.com from its partnership with Kelley Blue Book's kbb.com)